Royal Challengers Bangalore Wary of Sunrisers Hyderabad Banana Skin



It would be easy to see this match as some sort of formality. After all, Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) are right in the thick of the scrap for play-off places, while Sunrisers Hyderabad, along with Delhi Capitals, are already out of contention. But when you consider that Hyderabad have had the better of this rivalry, and also that Bangalore have an appalling record at this venue, it no longer seems like a free hit for Faf du Plessis and his side.

Neither side comes into this encounter in great form. Bangalore enjoyed that thumping win in Jaipur, but have lost three of four matches before that. Hyderabad have also won just two of their last five, and back-to-back defeats ended their hopes last weekend. It’s not hard to see why they have struggled so badly.

Heinrich Klaasen is the only one with over 300 runs, and the bowling burden has largely been shouldered by Bhuvneshwar Kumar (14 wickets) and the leg-spin of Mayank Markande (12). Marco Jansen and T Natarajan have enjoyed some fine spells, but also been terribly expensive at other times. But it’s the miserable batting card that has cost them dearly. 

Bangalore have a top three, led by du Plessis, that’s shown pretty robust form, but there’s been little else. Dinesh Karthik, Anuj Rawat and Mahipal Lomror have all been terribly inconsistent, and it’s not too different a story with the bowling. Mohammed Siraj has mostly been superb, though the wickets have dried up a little of late. Harshal Patel has veered between the tidy and the profligate, while Wanindu Hasaranga, Karn Sharma, and Wayne Parnell have all had their moments. Michael Bracewell has acquitted himself well when given a chance.

On paper, this should be a Bangalore win. But their IPL history is filled with so many near-misses and slips that no one will be taking that for granted.


Venue and time

Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium, Hyderabad. 7:30 PM.


Hyderabad have won 12 of their 22 matches. Bangalore have nine wins, and have suffered six defeats in Hyderabad. Their only win there was in 2015.

Expected conditions and toss

It will still be uncomfortably hot at the start of play, with the temperature around 36C. But the relatively low humidity should mean that dew isn’t much of a factor. Regardless, the team winning the toss might look to put a total on the board.  

Likely playing XI and impact player

Hyderabad will likely bring in Natarajan when they bowl, and he will take the place of a batter like Anmolpreet Singh. Bangalore could stick with the side that thrashed Rajasthan, though Hasaranga offers another leg-spin option if the pitch looks old and tired. In their last game, they swapped out Karthik for Shahbaz Ahmed.

Sunrisers Hyderabad: Anmolpreet Singh, Abhishek Sharma, Aiden Markram (C), Rahul Tripathi, Heinrich Klaasen (WK), Sanvir Singh, Abdul Samad, Marco Jansen, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mayank Markande, Fazalhaq Farooqi.

Royal Challengers Bangalore: Virat Kohli, Faf du Plessis (C), Glenn Maxwell, Mahipal Lomror, Dinesh Karthik (WK), Anuj Rawat, Wanindu Hasaranga/Michael Bracewell, Wayne Parnell, Karn Sharma, Harshal Patel, Mohammed Siraj.

Also Read: Bhagwat Chandrasekhar at The Oval – An Indian Cricket Miracle

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